“Some researchers dismiss abstract art as unsuitable for hospital use, due to “the perceived ambiguity of meaning in abstract art, which is maintained as being too open-ended for patients to interpret, as they are often experiencing states of unfamiliarity, vulnerability, stress, unpredictability, and uneasiness,” Mullins said. He and his colleagues think that other factors matter more than style, including size and placement, color and contrast (patients prefer bright colors), shape, and movement (to which patients respond well).”
“Great nature and art boost the immune system by lowering levels of chemicals that cause inflammation that can trigger diabetes, heart attacks and other illnesses.”
“After analyzing 15 studies that had people looking at art for different reasons, neuroscientist Oshin Vartanian explained in a Q&A that “areas of the brain involved in processing emotion and those that activate our pleasure and reward systems are also being engaged.” Essentially, parts of the brain that are associated with contemplation are automatically sparked when viewing art, even if they aren’t thinking about it critically.”
“Patients, especially those anxious about undergoing procedures and tests, respond well to the visual stimulation, finding it reduces their stress. And despite the fact that many hospitals face budget shortfalls, they often can purchase or commission art through funds supported by donations, or those built into budgets for new construction.”
“Nanda, who has a doctorate in architecture with a specialization in health-care systems and design, says scientific studies show that art can aid in the recovery of patients, shorten hospital stays and help manage pain. But she says it has to be the right art — vivid paintings of landscapes, friendly faces and familiar objects can lower blood pressure and heart rate, while abstract pictures can have the opposite effect.”
“We have seen a growing body of research from universities and from hospitals, and from physicians lately that tell us that there is measurable changes in things like heart rate, respiration, recovery time, but particularly, stress release”.
“Increase connection to nature. A number of studies have presented strong evidence that even 3 to 5 minutes of contact with nature can significantly decrease stress, reduce anger and fear, and increase pleasant feelings.8-11 This calming effect can be achieved by providing views to the outside, interior gardens or aquariums, or artwork with a nature theme.”